CLAIRE PARTINGTON’S art has been shown at the Seattle Art Museum, Kunstmuseum Bochum, Musée Ariana, Geneva (Bernardaud Foundation) and Halle Saint Pierre, Paris. Her work is in private collections worldwide including the Reydan Weiss Collection and 21C Museum.
Her work generally deals with narrative, symbolism, gender and status. Her interest lies in symbols and how people use them to identify with certain social groups. Her work also deals with the long European tradition of appropriation and reinterpretation of design styles, fashions and cultures.
Most of her big ceramic sculptures are made in earthenware, and now and then stoneware and porcelain. The pieces are all built from the base up as hollow vessels using coils of clay (like sausages). The coils are smoothed together and shape the figure as it is being built upwards. The pieces are refined and sculpted and then added with sprigged decoration, which is clay pushed into plaster moulds made from things like jewellery or toys – like the raised decoration you get on Wedgwood vases. The pieces are fired, glazed and then with use of digital enamel transfers or paint onto the surface with enamels and metal lustres. In total, the process can take up to four months, but Partington has a number of figures in production at the same time.